Orioles Series Preview


The Orioles are terrible right now. At 7-21 they have the worst record in the majors. They have scored just 97 runs and allowed 144. If the Twins can keep Matt Wieters from killing them, winning 3 or 4 games this weekend should be a fairly straightforward task. The Orioles do have some power in their bats, as they are 6th in the majors with 28 homers, one less than the Twins. But the only team that walks less than the Orioles is the Royals, so if there ever was a weekend for the starters to go deep into games, it would seem this would be it.

Thursday: Carl Pavano vs. Brad Bergesen

Bergesen’s numbers are cringe-inducing: a 10.57 ERA and 8.62 FIP, not to mention a ridiculous 6.26 tRA. Bergesen strikes out only about one-half batter more per 9 than he walks.

Friday: Francisco Liriano vs. Kevin Millwood

We’ve documented Liriano’s resurgence much here, but despite an 0-3 record, Millwood has been pretty good as well. He’s striking guys out (7.2/9), not walking guys (2.48/9) and not giving up the longball. His BABIP is a little under his career average, but it appears Millwood has either gotten quite lucky in these past two seasons, or he has undergone somewhat of a resurgence. Of minor note: he is throwing his changeup more than ever before this year, around 10% of the time.

Saturday: Scott Baker vs. Jeremy Guthrie

Guthrie hasn’t really struck anyone out this year, but he doesn’t walk anyone either, leading him to be somewhat of a flyball version of Nick Blackburn. He  is the least homer prone pitcher in the series, allowing less than a homer per 9, and could post the lowest FIP and tRA of his career.

Sunday: Nick Blackburn vs. TBD

Blackie has really sucked this year, no question, but he managed to get a lot of ground ball outs in his last outing. Although he is miscast as a ground ball pitcher, he is the pitcher on the staff that induces the most grounders and, with our shiny new infield defense, hopefully he can keep that going.